TALES FROM HISTORY

An Unexpected Guest Bows Before the Japanese Emperor

The White Elephant of the Fourth Imperial Rank

Elephant walking in forest path with sun rays falling on him.
Elephant. (Pixabay. Free to use CCO)

In the Edo era (1603–1867), Japan was closed to contact with the outside world except through a few, highly controlled ports. Perhaps due to that relative isolation, curiosity about things foreign grew to such a degree that the 8th shogun, Tokugawa Yoshimune, made an unusual request.

To read this little-known story from Japanese history, please visit my website:

If you would like to join Medium to get unlimited access to stories, I would be grateful if you would use my referral link. Doing so provides me with a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you!

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store